Coin Details

Origin/Country: UNITED STATES
Item Description: 1C 1984 DOUBLED DIE OBV
Full Grade: NGC MS 67 RD
Owner: Cellgazer

Set Details

Custom Sets: This coin is not in any custom sets.
Competitive Sets: Leftovers   Score: 1206
Research: NGC Coin Explorer NGC Coin Price Guide

Owner Comments:

The 1984 Doubled-Die Obverse Lincoln cent has a nickname that is also the key to its attribution—sometimes it’s called the “Doubled Ear Lincoln cent.” Rather unusually, the doubling of this coin appears almost exclusively on the bust of Lincoln, instead of on the lettering that surrounds him. It is so dramatic that the doubling creates a fully duplicated and well-spaced earlobe beneath Lincoln’s full ear. Doubling can also be seen on Lincoln’s beard, giving him a full double chin and a rather portly appearance. Variety expert Ken Potter notes that the widest doubling is seen on Lincoln’s bowtie, although this feature usually gets less mention. The discovery of this coin mirrored that of the 1983 Doubled-Die Reverse cent (see number 31), with both being found in large caches. Because these two coins appeared in consecutive years, it seems natural to compare them. Since the variety’s discovery in 1984, experts have speculated that the 1984 Doubled-Die Obverse is more common than the previous year’s Doubled-Die Reverse. A large find by a single coin dealer, believed to number 2,000 pieces, contributed to this thinking. Over time, certification reports have yielded additional insights, and it now appears that the two coins are of comparable rarity, with about 4,000 examples of each known to collectors. Compared to its 1983 counterpart, the 1984 Doubled-Die Obverse does not exhibit severe planchet flaws nearly as frequently. Many of the problems that the Mint experienced beginning in 1982 in creating Lincoln cents from a copper-layered zinc-core planchet were resolved by 1984, and therefore spotting and corrosion are less severe on this issue. As a result, higher-condition examples are much more plentiful, and the average grade of this cent is a full grade point higher than for the 1983 variety. Hence, at any given grade level, the 1984 issue trades for much less than the 1983, although overall interest level and availability are again similar. Both coins are considered requirements of a complete set of Lincoln Memorial cents. It is also very important to note that there are other collectible doubled-die obverses for this date, although the doubled-ear variety described here is by far the most valuable of them. One of the major pitfalls of variety collecting is that less-frequently collected varieties have significantly lower values, and, at one point or another, most variety collectors mistakenly purchase a coin that they believe is more desirable (and therefore more valuable) than it actually is. When purchasing this coin, especially when the example has not been attributed by a major grading service, make sure that the coin is indeed the doubled-ear example described here. Garrett, Jeff; Schechter, Scott; Bressett, Kenneth; Bowers, Q. David (2011-03-04). 100 Greatest US Modern Coins (Kindle Locations 2834-2855). Whitman Publishing. Kindle Edition.

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